The literal meaning ofdisability is “difficulty with ability”. Society deliberates that disability is operated on a variety of levelsand therefore anybody who in the end experiences difficulties could be consideredas a disabled person. Some forms ofmental or physical impairments can manifest impartial problems with mobility orawareness. According to the Disability Discrimination Act 1995, disabilityimpairments are stressed to include sensory impairments such as hearing orsight, mental impairments such as depression or learning difficulties andphysical impairments such as wheelchair users.
The National Disability Authority has seen how disability isdefined and understood for how people with disabilities are being treated andthe extent for nature of service provided. It is reasoned that disability is arelationship between people with impairments and the constraints imposed uponthem by society. The social model of disability is created by how society,government and health agencies responds to deficiencies experienced by aperson, this model requires a political response since it is grounded towards societyand how people respond to those with a disability. In the late 1980s, disabilityissues had developed an alternative model of service delivery that expressesthe principles of moving from a traditional model to a social model of disability.A helical progression has also helped develop some ideas; primary role of theideas had become one of support and safeguarding the individual withintheir own social network and communities. This proceeded as a facilitator to certifythat people are linked to and can participate within their own communities; creatingand developing new opportunities in the person’s own community because thecommunity is seen as a key resource where they can be associated with thesupport of the community. Furthermore, the social model of disability has an influence onhow people are perceived by society and influence policy making.
Disabilitypressure groups have been shaped and have highlighted the need for a socialmodel of inclusion in policy development. The impact of social model can bemeasured against the notion of quality that culturally, structurally andbureaucratically is defined. It is emphasized that disability is caused by isolated social measures,which refute equality of opportunity for the impaired people to participate in amainstream social conduct. A given example is that of blaming the victimin wider social and political environments is a prejudice against disabledpeople. This could relatively manifest and commonplace in itself in a routineof revulsion that is dismissive and illogical. In a charitable concern humanright and dignity are exchanged for support and good manners. Our culturespresent disabled people as either misfit or weak victims of personal tragedyand are subject to abusive and offensive treatments.
This reflects on differentresponses towards disabilities, which are mainly negative in their way; normsare geared towards the disabled people. It is a fact that anyone candiscriminate against anyone else; we can then accept that discrimination is notonly a sociological concept but also political and psychological phenomenon.Discrimination and oppression are often found when seeing people with learningdisabilities. Local polices are developed by the local authorities providingpositively caring support for disabled people. It is stressed that social workwithin charities occupies a unique position in the welfare system in whichdirectly or indirectly are active by the state to implement its welfarepolicies.
Disability is not the ‘fault’ of an individual disabled person,or an inevitable consequence of their limitations. It is caused by the societywe live under the social model. Disability is perceived as the product of thephysical, organizational and attitudinal barriers present within societyconduct, which ultimately lead to discrimination. The prevention ofdiscrimination requires a change of political and social approaches andthinking in the way in which society is organized.
The barriers that preventany individual playing a part in society are the problem, not the individual. Thebasic aim is to remove barriers so that disabled people can have the sameopportunity as everyone else to set their own life styles. Barriers still existin education, working environments and other amenities. The social model ofdisability has fundamentally changed the way in which disability is regardedand has had a major impact on anti-discriminatory legislation. However, somedisabled people and academics are involved in a re-evaluation of the socialmodel and they support that the time has come to move beyond this basicposition.